Untitled Document
August 17, 2017 [GMT]
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New Constitution: New clause to safeguard Buddhism
[Monday 2017-07-10 17:00]

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said on Saturday he would come up with a new proposal shortly to include provisions in the Constitution that would prohibit Governments from interfering with internal matters of three main Buddhist Chapters. The Prime Minister said this at the opening of the Weli Maluwa at Ruwan Weliseya in Anuradhapura over the weekend.


Gota at PRECIFAC
[Monday 2017-07-10 17:00]

Former defence secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa arrived at the PRECIFAC this morning in connection with the investigation into a fraud at the KKS cement factory. A spokesman said Mr. Rajapaksa arrived at the commission to give an affidavit with regard to a statement he made on July 15 regarding the fraud. Investigations were being carried out by the PRECIFAC on a complaint that some machinery and other equipment belonging to the KKS cement factory had been removed by the army saying it was done under a tender procedure for scrap metal.


Court orders DNA test on suspect in rape of three girls
[Monday 2017-07-10 17:00]

The Muttur Magistrate today ordered a DNA test to be carried out on the main suspect in the rape of three girls.The National Child Protection Authority (NCPA) had sought approval for the DNA test to be carried out on the suspect over the May 2017 rape incident. The NCPA says it had received a complaint to the effect that the investigation by the Police was not being conducted properly. Appearing in the case today the NCPA informed court it was investigating the complaint and sought court approval for the DNA test.


Sri Lanka FM reiterates necessity of a complete constitution acceptable to all communities
[Monday 2017-07-10 17:00]

The Minister of Foreign Affairs Ravi Karunanayake reiterates that the main aim of the Unity Government is to enter a process of Constitutional Amendment that would form a unitary system of rule where Buddhism is fostered, protected and is given its due place and honor. The Minister points out that it is the government's collective duty and responsibility to safeguard and nourish Buddhism.


TNA delegation to meet Mahanayakes
[Sunday 2017-07-09 17:00]

Tamil National Alliance (TNA) leader Rajavarothayam Sampanthan is to lead a delegation to meet prelates of leading Buddhist chapters. They will meet the Mahanayakes of the Malwatte and Asgiriya chapters. The move follows a call by the Mahanayakes urging President Maithripala Sirisena not to go ahead with a new Constitution. President Sirisena who met a delegation of the leading prelates told them that they would be consulted first whenever a new Constitution was formulated.


No Tamil appeasement; Buddhism to be foremost in Constitution: Sri Lanka PM
[Sunday 2017-07-09 17:00]

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has assured Sri Lankan's Buddhist monks that the government will not change the foremost place accorded to Buddhism in the proposed new Constitution amid concerns that it is being done to appease the Tamil minority.


Police officer strictured for dereliction of duty
[Sunday 2017-07-09 17:00]

A police officer testifying before the High Court Trial-at-Bar for the gang rape and gruesome murder of a schoolgirl in Punguduthivu, Jaffna, S. Vidya, was this week questioned as to how he failed to arrest a key suspect wanted in connection with the murder. During the 7-hour long testimony, the former Headquarters Inspector of Kayts, Quintus Perera said that, at the time of the incident, he didn’t know about the 9th suspect, Mahalingam Sasikumar alias Swiss Kumar. Therefore, he was not able to arrest him promptly, before he escaped to Colombo.


Bottom trawling: Lanka rejects TN chief minster’s protest
[Sunday 2017-07-09 17:00]

Sri Lanka yesterday rejected opposition by the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister to the Government’s new regulations banning ‘bottom trawling’ in Sri Lanka’s territorial waters. Fisheries Minister Mahinda Amaraweera said the new laws were passed in Parliament for the benefit of Sri Lanka’s fisheries industry.


Extension for envoy in US
[Sunday 2017-07-09 17:00]

Sri Lanka’s Ambassador Prasad Kariyawasam has received an extended tenure of service in the United States, until September this year. Foreign Minister Ravi Karunanayake has granted this extension, taking into consideration the upcoming UN General Assembly sessions. Though the UN is handled by the office of the Sri Lanka Permanent Representative in New York, bilateral meetings with heads of state attending the event have necessitated Mr Kariyawasam’s presence.


Sri Lanka’s first heart transplant in Kandy Hospital
[Sunday 2017-07-09 17:00]

Sri Lanka’s first heart transplant surgery had been successfully performed at the Kandy General Hospital, the Health Ministry said today. “A heart of a 24 year-old donor was transplanted to a 34-year-old woman, whose heart was 12 percent nonoperational,” Director of the Kandy Hospital Dr. Saman Ratnayake said. He said two the kidneys of the donor too were transplanted to two patients. He said both the heart and the kidney recipients were under the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the Kandy GH.


Kankesanthurai cement factory: Army personnel notified to appear before PRECIFAC
[Saturday 2017-07-08 18:00]

Several Army personnel were notified today to appear before the Presidential Commission of Inquiry into Serious Acts of Fraud (PRECIFAC) on July 13 to inquire into allegation on the removal of scrap metal from the Kankesanthurai cement factory. Former Army Commander General Daya Ratnayake, Major General Mahinda Hathurusinghe, retired Major General Udeya Anasley Perera and retired former Defence Ministry Additional Defence Secretary Siripala Hettiaarachchi are the army personnel notified.


Anunayake Thera tells Gota not to jump the gun
[Saturday 2017-07-08 18:00]

The Anunayake of the Malwathu Chapter Ven. Dimbulkumbure Wimaladhamma Thera told former Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa that opposition to the proposed Constitution has no basis. “It is akin to making a horoscope for an unborn baby,” the Anunayake Thera said, stating that the opposition to a Constitution for which a draft has not been finalised is futile.


Sri Lanka to transform former war-torn district into tourism hub
[Saturday 2017-07-08 18:00]

Sri Lanka will transform the former war-torn northern district of Mannar into a major tourism hub, the Tourism Ministry said Friday. The district of Mannar has been positioned as the main hub for visiting the region's key attractions, including the famed Madhu Church Shrine, Wilpattu National Park and a host of other sites which have been identified as having considerable tourism potential, the ministry said in statement.


Bank of China to open branch here
[Saturday 2017-07-08 18:00]

The Bank of China, one of the largest State-owned financial institutions in China is expected to open a branch in Colombo this year, its first in South Asia, a spokesman said yesterday. The banking authorities are in contact with the Sri Lankan authorities to finalize the process. A Chinese embassy spokesman told Daily Mirror that it would be opened with an initial capital of US$90 million. He said the bank’s presence in Colombo would facilitate Sri Lanka’s financial transactions with China.


Sri Lanka has no room now for dictatorial or military rule: President
[Saturday 2017-07-08 18:00]

President Maithripala Sirisena says it was a dictatorial, military rule he ended on January 8, 2015 and the country has no any room for such a rule again. The President was speaking at a ceremony held on Thursday to open the newly built administration building at the Irrigation Training Institute in Galgamuwa. “The people today has understood the conspiracies by some persons to come into power by showing a fantasy world,” he said.


PM: A new Constitution will be presented
[Saturday 2017-07-08 18:00]

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday said that there was no change in the decision taken by the government to introduce a new constitution. Addressing a government function in Mannar, the Prime Minister said that only the people could change that decision. "We will honour the mandate given by the people. The government is committed to fulfilling the aspirations of the people."


Infighting blocks TNA registration
[Friday 2017-07-07 19:00]

The registration of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), as a political party, has been halted due to internal strife, sources said. They said the reason for this is a feud currently taking place among several political parties who are in the TNA coalition. A spokesman for the TNA stated that due to such reasons they......have thus far not been able to register as a party. The TNA is currently being represented by the Illankai Tamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK), Eelam People's Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF), People's Liberation Organization of Tamil Eelam (PLOTE), and Tamil Eelam Liberation Organization (TELO).


NO CHANGE TO COUNTRY’S UNITARY STATUS, PLACE FOR BUDDHISM
[Friday 2017-07-07 19:00]

President Maithripalala Srisena yesterday assured the Maha Nayaka Theras of the Three Chapters that the government will not bring any constitutional reforms that will disrupt the country’s unitary state or the place for Buddhism. The President also informed the Maha Nayaka theras that there has been no new constitution drafted yet. Should there be a new draft Constitution it will be presented to the Mahahanayaka Theras and the leaders of the clergy of other religions for review before it will go to Parliament, he said.


UN human rights expert on first mission to Sri Lanka
[Friday 2017-07-07 19:00]

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and Counter-Terrorism Ben Emmerson will undertake an official visit to Sri Lanka from July 10 to 14 to gather first-hand information on initiatives in the area of counter-terrorism and assess how they affect the promotion and protection of human rights.


Vidya Murder Trial: Defence to commence case on July 24
[Friday 2017-07-07 19:00]

The prosecution led by Presidents Counsel Dappula De Livera concluded evidence of all its main witnesses on Wednesday July 5, at the Trial at Bar hearings into the Vidya murder trial taking place at the Jaffna High Court.


Lankan accused of murdering wife in Quebec deported
[Friday 2017-07-07 19:00]

A Sri Lankan man accused of killing his wife in Quebec five years ago has been deported after the charge against him was stayed because of an unreasonable delay, CBC news Canada reported. Sivaloganathan Thanabalasingham, a 32-year-old permanent Canadian resident, was set to appear today at a detention review hearing, but it has been cancelled, a spokesperson at the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada said Thursday.


Disappearance Bill to be taken up in House after further study
[Friday 2017-07-07 19:00]

The International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance Bill will be taken up in Parliament later as it has to be further studied and discussed, Ports and Shipping Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said. The Minister said that President Maithripala Sirisena has pointed out at the Government Parliamentarians Group Meeting that the Act should be further studied prior to being presented in Parliament.


TNA Dismayed at Maha Sangha ‘Veto’
[Thursday 2017-07-06 18:00]

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has urged the three main Buddhist Sectsin the country to reconsider their assertion that there was no need for a new Constitution for the country. TNA MP MA Sumanthiran stated that when all political parties represented in the legislature had contributed towards the drafting of a new Constitution, the main Buddhist Sects affirming that there was no need for such a framework was both shocking and ridiculous.


Sri Lanka's new Army Commander to support investigations on war crimes
[Thursday 2017-07-06 18:00]

Sri Lanka's new Army Commander Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake says as an officer in the battle front during the final phase of the war he rejects the war crime allegations against the Sri Lanka Army but supports the investigations. The 22nd Commander of the Sri Lanka Army ceremonially assumed duties today at the Army Headquarters amid religious blessings of the clergy of all denominations.


Sumanthiran calls on the government to keep its initial pledge to the people
[Thursday 2017-07-06 18:00]

Tamil National Alliance (TNA) MP M.A Sumanthiran today called on the Government to keep its initial pledge to the people and complete the task of Constitutional reforms circumventing the snags it has come across. Speaking at the debate in Parliament, the MP urged the Government to put the draft Bill on Constitution before people and seek their opinion at a referendum.


Govt. to go ahead with new Constitution
[Thursday 2017-07-06 18:00]

The government said yesterday that it would go ahead with the constitution making process,but the final decision on enacting a new Constitution would be made by Parliament. "There is no one need for anyone to get unduly agitated over it,Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne, told the weekly Cabinet press briefing at the Information Department.


Govt withdraws controversial Bill
[Thursday 2017-07-06 18:00]

The government yesterday refrained from presenting a bill seeking to ratify the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance for debate. The bill was listed for its second reading debate, but Leader of the House and Minister Lakshman Kiriella, informed the House that the Bill would not be moved for debate, said. it would be taken up again shortly.


Govt.has mandate to introduce new Constitution: Bimal
[Thursday 2017-07-06 18:00]

The present government has a mandate given by 6.2 million people in 2015 to bring in a new Constitution, JVP MP Bimal Ratnayake yesterday said. Ratnayake further said the Chief Prelates’ position regarding a new Constitution is the opinion of the venerable monks. He also said all the previous governments came into power promising a new Constitution but failed to realise it.

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